Zack Stoner wasn't your typical journalist. The 30-year-old made a name for himself with his YouTube channel ZackTV, which he used to document various aspects of Chicago's South Side community, providing an apologetically raw look at the city's violence, poverty, and music scene.
"A lot of people respect what I do," he said in a 2018 interview with The Defender. "I'm the 'Hood CNN.'"
Less than two months after The Defender profile was published, Stoner was murdered in Chicago's South Loop neighborhood. According to police, Stoner was driving from a rap concert on May 30 at around 1:30 a.m., when a vehicle pulled up next to his Jeep and several shots were fired. Stoner sustained gunshot wounds to his neck and head, causing him to crash his car into a pole. He was transported to Northwest Memorial Hospital and was pronounced dead shortly after.
The case remains unsolved.
In the latest installment of Complex News Presents, we take a closer look at Stoner's impact on Chicago's South Side as well as the mysterious circumstances surrounding his death.